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Published: September 16th 2005
I took 3 weeks rest in Israel in the middle of my travels. It was great to see my family, my friends (apologies to those I haven't met, time was so short eventually :-)
And on Tuesday morning I boarded El-Al plane again, this time with my sisters Daphna and Hadas, flying to Mumbai, India.
The flight was ok, but I was terrified of India. Most of all I was terrified of the smell I heard about. And so we landed in Mumbai and I took a deep breath, and - nothing. Really, nothing really bad. Yes, sometimes you pass in smelly places or pass smelly people, but it’s not too bad, and it’s not everywhere or everyone. What’s the story here?? Anyway, I was so relieved… So it’s not so clean around, but so far we were not cheated by anyone, the taxies took us to our destinations, we survived.
We had one night in Mumbai and an early flight so we planned to stay near the domestic airport. It still took an hour to pass the 5km from the international to domestic, because they had some holiday and people were marching on the road with drums. It was nice but imagine the traffic jams… The hotel we planned to stay in was disgusting but we were really lucky to find a nice one right on the other side of the alley.
In the morning we flew in to Delhi. We decided to go to Dharamsala in the night so we had a day to pass in Delhi. Hadas and I were exhausted so it wasn’t easy for us. For Daphna it is the first time in Asia and in fact she enjoyed it a lot. So she had enough energy to carry us all day, at the main bazzar area (main backpackers area) and also to Connaught Place - an elegant area of Delhi (all relatively speaking of course), where we had ice cream in McDonalds! We were impressed by Delhi’s metro train. They have an underground train system with 3 lines that was probably opened recently. Strangely enough, it’s not even mentioned in the Lonely Planet. We used it twice - it’s very modern and clean (and cheap of course, 6rps that are 0.6 Shekel or about 0.12US$).
I am not reporting my other impressions from Delhi because it won’t be fair - I was so tired the whole day that it was hard to enjoy. I was happy enough that I didn’t suffer from anything - smell, dirt, touts, even the guys only stared at us, didn't do more than that. We’ll be back in Delhi for a real visit when we’re back from the north.
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